Cimarron’s 1860 Henry rifle, reproduced from an original Belonging to Aldo Uberti, would make Benjamin Tyler Henry proud!
One of the most iconic guns of the American West is the Henry Repeating rifle, a lever-action, breech-loading, “sixteen-shooter” rifle originally produced by the New Haven Arms Company in New Haven, Connecticut, part of the famed “gun alley.” Since its inception and limited run, the Henry rifle has been beloved by homesteaders, cowboys, soldiers, frontiersmen and the law. As the fore runner to today’s modern lever-action, the Henry is still one of the most prevalent iconic symbols of the Old West, and one of the most reproduced. With some storied antique rifles selling for upward of $50,000, manufacturers have been quick to exploit its popularity.
The Cimarron Firearms 1860 Henry Repeating Rifle is unique among the imposters. Like many of Cimarron’s replicas, the basis of its design is an actual antique in the Cimarron collection. Using an authentic Henry rifle as the platform for the new replica, Cimarron utilizes modern technologies and machining, combined with old world craftsmanship and an astute attention to historic details, such as the original-type sling swivels and the C.G.C. inspector’s stampings.
The success in the Henry rifle lay in its ability to load sixteen cartridges in a magazine at one time and be able to “repeatedly” discharge the cartridges from a single barrel without reloading. In prior war time scenarios, the most common weapon was a single-shot breechloader, which required reloading after every round fired, a detriment to anyone on the front lines.
B. Tyler Henry based his legendary design on the 1848 Volition Repeating rifle, a revolutionary early version of the lever-action repeating mechanism, and tubular magazine designed by Walter Hunt for Horace Smith and Daniel B. Wesson’s Volcanic Repeating Arms Company. Smith and Wesson’s short-lived company would soon close its doors after the failed prototype but would eventually become two of the most world-famous firearms manufacturers, Smith & Wesson and the Winchester Repeating Arms Company.
Oliver Winchester, an investor in the former Smith & Wesson Company, or Volcanic Repeating Arms Company, as it was later known, took over ownership and moved the plant to New Haven, Connecticut, better known as “gun alley” where he reorganized as the New Haven Arms Company in 1857. Plant Superintendent, B. Tyler Henry, experimented with the new .44 rimfire copper-cased cartridges and modified the original Volcanic lever-action to accommodate it. The legend was born: The Henry Repeating Rifle of 1860. Under the new auspices as the Winchester Repeating Arms company, only 14,000 Henry lever-action rifles were produced between 1862 and 1866.
Needless to say, the Henry Repeating rifle became the choice firearm for the Northern troops during the Civil War, with many Confederate’s lamenting that “that damn Yankee rifle, they load it on Sunday and shoot all week.” Beloved by soldiers and stagecoach drivers, frontiersmen and law enforcement, the Henry Repeating Rifle was also used by the Sioux and Cheyenne against Custer’s 7th Cavalry in the Battle at Little Big Horn.
Today, the Henry Repeating Rifle can proudly claim to be the grandfather of a host of lever-action rifles and carbines on the market. Out of all reproductions and replicas available today, the Uberti produced Cimarron Firearms Henry Repeating Rifle is the closest to the original Henry 1860 Model chambered in .44 Winchester or .45 Colt. Available as either the brass-framed model or the early-type Henry with a beautifully colored case-hardened frame, sporting an authentically styled 24-inch octagonal barrel with the distinctive front-loaded tubular magazine integrated into the shrouded barrel. Truly a museum quality replica of a pivotal American firearms design for those that want to experience authenticity unlike anything else available today.
Here’s a YouTube video link from the boys with The Alamo and a brief overview of the Henry Repeating Rifle.
For more information on Cimarron Firearms and accessories, visit www.cimarron-firearms.com.
About Cimarron Firearms:
Cimarron is recognized as the leader in quality and authenticity in replica firearms. For the past 35 years, Cimarron has worked continuously to perfect the authentic detail, fit, finish and function of our line of frontier firearms. There is no other firearm that is near equal in value, strength, reliability and authentic detail as is the line from Cimarron Firearms Co.